Western Bankers in China
Institutional Change and Corporate Governance
By Jane Nolan
Routledge – 2014
The opening of China’s financial market to western banks was seen as a key plank of the economic reform programme. Despite the recent banking crisis and the idea that Chinese banks might supplant western banks in the global financial system, Chinese banks continue to suffer from fundamental problems including a shallow talent pool, a shortage of technical expertise, and weak corporate governance mechanisms. This book analyses the role which western bankers have played in China’s economic reforms, focusing on their influence on institutional change and corporate governance. Based on extensive original research, the book shows that while components of western models of corporate governance have been widely adopted, the over-riding perception is that the motivation for these changes is legitimacy-seeking by Chinese banks, and that whilst there has been relatively rapid change in the formal legislative environment, the informal normative and cultural-cognitive realms are changing at a much slower pace.
1. Introduction 2. 30 Years of Financial Reform: Cash and Know-How in the 21st Century 3. Understanding Economic Action in Chinese and Western Contexts 4. The Nature of Corporate Governance in the Banking Sector 5. The Western Experience of Regulatory Institutions 6. The Enduring Influence of Cognitive and Normative Institutions 7. Trust (and the lack thereof) Following the Sub-Prime Crisis 8. Continuities and Change in Corporate Governance 9. Conclusions
Jane Nolan is a Nuffield Foundation New Career Fellow in the Department of Sociology and a Senior Research Fellow and Director of Studies at Magdalene College, University of Cambridge.